What entrepreneurs can learn from Marvel Master Stan Lee

adminNovember 23, 2018

Entrepreneurs must remember that we are the authors of our own destinies and the superheroes of our own stories.

22 of 2018

6 min of reading

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You may not be familiar with the late great Lee Lee, but you've definitely heard of Spider-Man, the Hulk or Wolverine.

In fact, many of Lee's characters are known around the world. The patriarch of Marvel Comics, who died on November 12, 2018, inspired generations of children and adults alike, whether they were fanatics of comics or fans of Lee's characters on the big screen.

To this day, the Marvel Universe continues to play a very important role in the entertainment industry. In fact, Marvel's creations have only become more popular in recent years.

I consider myself part of that fandom: I spent my teenage years painstakingly studying the panels of Marvel and DC Comics, and while my attempts to create my own comic book creations only gave a diagnosis of painful carpal tunnel syndrome, the time I spent immersed in the medium is still paid in great ways.

Giving meaning to the masses

By drastically moving away from the high demigods that inhabit the DC Comics universe, Lee made sure that his magic arose from the creation of characters who felt accessible and real.

Spider-Man, for example, was a teenage nerd photographer whose own ego ended in the death of his beloved uncle. And the X-Men were inspired by the struggles of Martin Luther King, Jr. and Malcolm X to achieve equality of civil rights. However, Lee still managed to make the topic even relate to the children.

Related: How to overcome obstacles.

Lee's characters were successful because they achieved relevance with readers, but he himself still faced significant challenges during his career. Specifically, he had difficulty being taken seriously in an industry that had not yet earned the respect of other writers, and admitted that in the early days he felt ashamed of being "just a comic book writer."

In addition, Lee and his co-creators lacked the business knowledge necessary to navigate the decisions related to rights, property and financial participation in the meteoric rise of the characters they invented.

However, despite these obstacles, Lee achieved financial success and converted what many considered glorified children's books into an art form: important feats that contain important lessons for all types of modern entrepreneurs. Here are several quotes attributed to Lee that summarize those lessons:

1. "With great power comes a great responsibility."

Frankly, this adage is probably one of the most important knowledge available, right there with the Golden Rule. As you ascend in life and gain increasing influence, it is important to take care of those around you.

For example, a designer who is promoted to creative director suddenly has more power, but also has a greater responsibility for both the company and its subordinates.

Related: Ten personality traits of legendary businessmen

Caring for the people around you is a mark of good leadership. CEOs in large corporations have huge demands on time, but the best thing about it is to remember that your employees make the machine move. With Howard Schultz at the helm of Starbucks, the company prioritized extremely competitive benefits even for part-time employees, including tuition reimbursement and 401 (k) plans that partially match employee contributions.

The lesson: When you fulfill the great responsibilities that you have as owner and leader of a business, you will begin to acquire the great power that Lee talks about. It is an equation that feeds alone.

2. "The greatest superpower is luck".

Lee in no way minimized the importance of hard work, but tried to remind himself and others that it took more than a strong work ethic and talent to succeed. Luck plays a very important role in success, but it is easy for entrepreneurs to forget this lesson and wonder why they have not reached the top.

With a net worth of almost $ 70 billion at just 33, Mark Zuckerberg is one of the most successful entrepreneurs in the world. While it would be easy for him to promote his own skills as the special sauce that led him to be where he is, he admits that there has been much more in history. "You can not succeed just because of being a worker or having a good idea," Zuckerberg said. "You have to be lucky in today's society for that to happen."

Unless employers acknowledge this fact, they run the risk of running out and giving up too soon.

3. "I expected the books to be sold and to keep my work."

It is easy for passionate entrepreneurs to get caught in the dream. Whether they want to create an international power or face Google, their goals mean little if they can not build a product that people want to buy.

Lee recognized that his main goal was to create a nice product that was good enough to keep him employed and move on. If you create a product that is worthwhile and that resonates with your audience, you will achieve success over time.

Apple is a great example of a company that creates valuable products. The easy-to-use interfaces on their devices demonstrated a creative brilliance from the start and immediately captivated the audience. While many companies have adopted several key features since then, Apple made history by being the first, and remains the world's largest technology company by revenue.

Related: The secrets of Lego for the longevity of the brand.

In the same way that he created so many compelling characters, Lee never adopted a passive approach to creating his own brand. Although other writers and artists such as Jack Kirby and Steve Ditko were so responsible for many of Marvel's creations, Lee's ability to drive his own narrative was the reason why he was often considered the deity of the Marvel Universe .

And while this talent was a frequent target of criticism, it was a skill shared by many of the titans of technology, such as Steve Jobs and Elon Musk. While entrepreneurs struggle to pursue our dreams, we must remember that, to a large extent, we are the authors of our own destinies and the superheroes of our own stories. Excelsior!

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